Celebrating Five Years of Kickstarter in the UK

Lucy Sparrow's Cornershop, where everything's made of felt.
Lucy Sparrow's Cornershop, where everything's made of felt.

Five years ago today a Kickstarter team was supposed to be over in the UK celebrating our first international expansion. Unfortunately, Hurricane Sandy trapped them in a soggy New York. But the Kickstarter community in the UK quickly flourished regardless: In the last five years, 27,500 UK projects have launched, and they’ve attracted £168 million in pledges.

This felt like the right moment to look back at some of our favorite UK projects. It was a tough list to whittle down, but we hope it conveys the breadth of the creativity that has come out of Kickstarter in the UK, and the impact those projects have had at home and abroad. 

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Rough Cut: Apply to Host a Work-in-Progress Screening at Kickstarter HQ

Making movies is tough, but thrilling. And there’s nothing more thrilling for filmmakers than to see the fruits of their labor in post-production and eventually on to festivals and distribution. But there are countless challenges along the way, and filmmakers must to be able to step out of the edit and see their work on a larger format in order to be able to fine-tune it and, ultimately, lock picture.

Kickstarter’s Film team wants to ease the financial pressure on alumni filmmakers in post-production who are looking for a venue to screen their work. So, earlier this year, we decided to open our fifty-seat theater at our headquarters in Brooklyn to select Kickstarter alumni with films nearing completion. This gives them the chance to show their works-in-progress to funders, collaborators, and test audiences. For some of them, it will be the first time they see their work on a big screen.

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Kickstarter Creators on the Future of Independent Journalism

A student reporter for Brooklyn Deep, a Kickstarter-funded investigative journalism platform
A student reporter for Brooklyn Deep, a Kickstarter-funded investigative journalism platform

A home for citizen-run investigations. A platform for community storytelling. A podcast network created to revolutionize the medium.

Since Kickstarter launched eight years ago, writers, photographers, and podcasters have used it to forge their own paths in journalism. And a community of readers and listeners has followed: as of this month, over $10 million has been pledged to Journalism projects on Kickstarter.

To mark the milestone, we spoke with the creators behind three memorable Kickstarter-funded journalism projects. They shared their thoughts on the future of independent journalism and the potential for journalists —  by teaming up with the Kickstarter community  — to transform the field.

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Jesse Genet of Lumi Shares Three Practical Steps for Planning Your Packaging

We often learn new things about ourselves while working on creative projects. Jesse Genet launched Lumi, a line of light-sensitive ink kits, over the course of two Kickstarter campaigns. In the process, she discovered that she loved solving the logistical puzzle of shipping things. So she shifted her company's focus to helping other creators design beautiful packaging for their projects. We asked Genet to share some tips on how to plan for packaging and shipping before you launch a Kickstarter campaign.

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Announcing Commissions, an Open Call for Collaborative Projects

Personalized rock songs, customized storybooks, and tweets transformed into comic strips.

These are just a few of the rewards we’ve seen emphasizing the spirit of backer-creator collaboration that’s always been at the heart of Kickstarter. Now, we’re putting this type of collaboration front and center with Commissions, an open call for projects that invite backers into the creative process.

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Designed in Mexico: Seven Projects from Designaholic’s Open Call

Versión en español a continuación.

Since 2008, Designaholic founder Jorge Diego Etienne has been on a mission to showcase and promote design in Mexico through articles, columns, and critical essays. The Mexico City-based blog recently held an open call for projects from local designers, selecting seven to receive coaching from Kickstarter’s team in Mexico. The projects will also be part of an exhibition at the Abierto Mexicano de Diseño festival in Mexico City in October.

We asked Etienne to tell us more about the projects he selected, all of which are now live on Kickstarter.

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Invent, Build, Repair, Learn, Play: Kickstarter Creators at the 2017 World Maker Faire

The World Maker Faire takes over the New York Hall of Science in Queens this weekend. Occupying the grounds of the 1939 and 1964 World’s Fairs, it channels the optimism of those historic events — the belief that bringing people from all over the world together to share ideas can help shape a better future.

Here at Kickstarter, we feel a special kinship with the folks behind Maker Faire because they share our own expansive definition of creativity. At the fair you’ll find roboticists, artists, crafters, chefs, electrical engineers, amateur inventors, game designers, musicians, and many others enthusiastically sharing their creations with the curious crowd.

Here’s a sampling of the dozens of Kickstarter creators who will be displaying their projects at the 2017 World Maker Faire on September 23 and 24.

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